Children‚’s poor mental health has been a growing concern for parents and staff in schools over the last 10 years and the pandemic has only exacerbated the problem.
¬º of young people feel unable to cope with life (Princes Trust 2020)
As specialists in children‚’s emotional wellbeing and behaviour, we are seeing an increase in children‚’s feelings of anxiety and we see issues in children at a much younger age. This needs to be addressed before we are left with a mental health emergency.
At the moment there is a piecemeal approach which is often focused on secondary aged children through a few PHSE lessons or some mindfulness sessions. Although these are helpful, they generally don‚’t make enough of a difference to those who are already suffering with anxiety.
We should take this opportunity to look at our curriculum and provide a robust scheme of work for schools which runs from the early years upwards. This would develop children’s emotional literacy, help them to recognise and normalise their feelings and build a tool box of strategies which they can use to manage their emotions.